Classical Music Home

The World's Leading Classical Music Group

Email Password  
Not a subscriber yet?
Keyword Search
in
 
 Classical Music Home > Naxos Album Reviews

Album Reviews



 
See latest reviews of other albums...


Gary Lemco
Audiophile Audition, February 2007

Like his younger contemporary Benjamin Britten, Michael Tippett (1905-1998) maintained a clear musical interest in traditional forms, especially the art of variation. Tippett's First Piano Sonata (1936-1937) opens with a highly expressive, albeit dense, tune that immediately evolves into five variations. Variations again for the second movement, based on Scottish folk-song. If the opening Allegro has neoclassic lines, the Andante tranquillo waxes neo-romantic, touched by soft strokes not so distant from Faure. The Presto hints at Liszt, maybe the opening of the Petrarch sonnets, but here more toccata-like. Donohoe (recorded 21 May 2004) provides a darkly glittering patina for its knotty agogics. The Rondo giocoso con moto could easily be mistaken for something modern by Gottschalk, rhythmically free and often bluesy in its passing harmonies and syncopations. Donohoe gives this music a full-blooded verve, plenty of arpeggios and wrist action. Cascades of sound as we rush forward, with Tippett's seeming to pay homage to Gershwin.

An austerity of sound clusters marks the Second Sonata (1962), whose one-movement structure may harken back to the Op. 1 of Alban Berg. Bursts of color are interrupted by hard staccati and broken-octave passages. Stravinsky's influence of non-linear aesthetic provides a model, like the terse Movements for Piano and Orchestra. Highly sectionalized, the piece offers a series of musical styles, some parlando, others fiercely pianistic or musically parsimonious and stark. Donohoe demonstrates a range of keyboard modalities that makes us want to hear his Gaspard de la Nuit. Some will liken episodes of this sonata to Stravinsky's arrangement of scenes from Petrushka.

Tippett's Third Sonata (1973) seems to model itself after Beethoven's Appassionata Sonata I (rec. 6-8 December 2004). Alternately driving and lyrical, the first of the three movements, Allegro, evolves a strict sonata-form, the contrapuntal sonority a cross between Debussy's pedaled softness and Prokofiev's hard-surfaced glitter. The slow movement, Lento, features a theme and four variations The extended song of the Lento breaks off convulsively for the Allegro energico: repeated, hammered chord and skittish riffs. Another toccata, it picks up a brisk run and then Thor's anger comes down, notes in flurries everywhere. Donohoe plays with conviction and percussive power, and we suspect he has a tender place in his heart for these wily, stylistically diverse efforts.



Gary Lemco
Audiophile Audition, February 2007


Like his younger contemporary Benjamin Britten, Michael Tippett (1905-1998) maintained a clear musical interest in traditional forms, especially the art of variation. Tippett's First Piano Sonata (1936-1937) opens with a highly expressive, albeit dense, tune that immediately evolves into five variations. Variations again for the second movement, based on Scottish folk-song. If the opening Allegro has neoclassic lines, the Andante tranquillo waxes neo-romantic, touched by soft strokes not so distant from Faure. The Presto hints at Liszt, maybe the opening of the Petrarch sonnets, but here more toccata-like. Donohoe (recorded 21 May 2004) provides a darkly glittering patina for its knotty agogics. The Rondo giocoso con moto could easily be mistaken for something modern by Gottschalk, rhythmically free and often bluesy in its passing harmonies and syncopations. Donohoe gives this music a full-blooded verve, plenty of arpeggios and wrist action. Cascades of sound as we rush forward, with Tippett's seeming to pay homage to Gershwin.

An austerity of sound clusters marks the Second Sonata (1962), whose one-movement structure may harken back to the Op. 1 of Alban Berg. Bursts of color are interrupted by hard staccati and broken-octave passages. Stravinsky's influence of non-linear aesthetic provides a model, like the terse Movements for Piano and Orchestra. Highly sectionalized, the piece offers a series of musical styles, some parlando, others fiercely pianistic or musically parsimonious and stark. Donohoe demonstrates a range of keyboard modalities that makes us want to hear his Gaspard de la Nuit. Some will liken episodes of this sonata to Stravinsky's arrangement of scenes from Petrushka.

Tippett's Third Sonata (1973) seems to model itself after Beethoven's Appassionata Sonata I (rec. 6-8 December 2004). Alternately driving and lyrical, the first of the three movements, Allegro, evolves a strict sonata-form, the contrapuntal sonority a cross between Debussy's pedaled softness and Prokofiev's hard-surfaced glitter. The slow movement, Lento, features a theme and four variations The extended song of the Lento breaks off convulsively for the Allegro energico: repeated, hammered chord and skittish riffs. Another toccata, it picks up a brisk run and then Thor's anger comes down, notes in flurries everywhere. Donohoe plays with conviction and percussive power, and we suspect he has a tender place in his heart for these wily, stylistically diverse efforts.



Scott Cantrell
The Dallas Morning News, January 2006

These are some of the most appealing piano sonatas of the 20th century, and they're played with authority and élan by British pianist Peter Donohoe. Sound is good, too, and Richard Whitehouse's program notes admirably elucidate Tippett's surprisingly classical structures.





Classic FM, January 2006

View PDF  


Gramophone, December 2005

View PDF  





Famous Composers Quick Link:
Bach | Beethoven | Chopin | Dowland | Handel | Haydn | Mozart | Glazunov | Schumann | R Strauss | Vivaldi
2:19:20 AM, 17 September 2014
All Naxos Historical, Naxos Classical Archives, Naxos Jazz, Folk and Rock Legends and Naxos Nostalgia titles are not available in the United States and some titles may not be available in Australia and Singapore because these countries have copyright laws that provide or may provide for terms of protection for sound recordings that differ from the rest of the world.
Copyright © 2014 Naxos Digital Services Ltd. All rights reserved.     Terms of Use     Privacy Policy
-208-
Classical Music Home
NOTICE: This site was unavailable for several hours on Saturday, June 25th 2011 due to some unexpected but essential maintenance work. We apologize for any inconvenience.